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Hi Everybody. Here are a couple of snippets from Costa Rica. Man it's hot and languid down here. I feel so sleeepy.

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Well we made it. We've already surfed for hours and in some of the biggest, strongest beach break surf I've ever ridden. My new short board is great and I'm surfing better than ever. Needless to say I'm exhausted to the point of delerium. We found a nice hotel, the Terrazza del Pacifico, in Playa Hermosa. It's right on the beach, has a pool, pool bar, beach bar, AC, and free breakfast. Best of all, slithery iquanas skulk all about the grounds and disappear into tree stumps or climb the coconut palms when humans approach.

Wednesday, June 16

Waves continue to be incredible here. Internet connection is way too slow to write very much. It takes almost an hour just to read my incoming messages. Still, we are having fun, traveling, surfing, and eating lots of rice and beans and fish.

Yesterday we hiked in the rainforest and saw toucans, a sloth, an owl, a black hawk, a white-faced monkey, iguanas, and many different butterflies. It was about 90 degrees and raining off and on. Sweating was useless but my body persisted anyhow.

Last night we had a very nice dinner at an ecologically-correct luxury hotel, Si Como No, way up on a hillside overlooking the Pacific in Manuel Antonio. A storm rolled in an we were treated to nature's fireworks for hours. Fantastic.

Unfortunately Manuel Antonio has developed into a touristic mess with three or four times as many hotels and restaurants as there were ten years ago. Si Como No is probably the nicest place to stay in town. Very expensive but very well done with an excellent kitchen. Still, we stayed elsewhere for a sixth of the price and just hung out there. Those couple of drinks alone cost twice what our hotel cost.

We had a beer at a place called El Avion. This restaurant and bar is built inside and around a huge, intact US C-130 military cargo plane. It is actually one of the two planes used by Ollie North to ship arms to bases in northern Costa Rica during the 80s to aid the Contras. The other plane was shot down and the American mercenary aboard was captured. That event started the chain of events that led to the exposure of the illegal Iran-Contra fiasco. Reagan is for the most part hated down here. What a difference perspective makes.

Thursday, June 17

Surf has dropped to about head high. Still powerful though. I'm not sure I can keep paddling twice a day for two hours.

I've been sleeping in a crappy old, humid, flying insect attracting mattress but in a very cool room. Check out the web page for Cabinas Las Olas, Playa Hermosa. We're in the Sky Box for three nights. It's the very top A-frame room in the pictures. Great view of the beach from my bed and no mosquitos because it's above their range. It's very private. It would be a great place for a roomantic getaway (although AC would help).

Friday, June 18

We continue to surf every day here.

It rains often and I see lightning flashes almost every morning and evening. The vegetation covers everything here like a thick green blanket. This verdant cover rolls right down to the edge of the sea, where black sand and blue sea break the solid carpet of green creating a narrow winding border. Wasps, and geckos, iguanas, and numerous birds roam every available space, while languid complacent dogs and the occasional cat wander into our hotel room and stray beneath our feet.

I'm starting to look forward to going home.

Pura Vida,

Michael